Wake Up Call

Dumb Starbucks Is Shut Down, Revealed as Comedy Central Star's Gag

The Interweb has been ablaze with talk of Dumb Starbucks, the L.A.-based parody coffee shop specializing in Dumb Frappuccinos, Dumb Norah Jones Duet CDs, and Dumb Venti Dumb Lattes. Two days after everyone caught word of the spoof cafe, Instagrammers posted shots of everything inside and outside the dumb coffee house, including the hour-plus wait for a dumb iced tea. Sadly, with less than a week of operating under its belt, Dumb Starbucks was shut down by the health inspector for operating without a health permit, which is a pretty dumb way to go for a small business teetering on the verge of getting smacked in the face with copyright laws. However, getting shut down finally forced the dumb man behind the dumb curtain out into the open, according to the NY Daily News, and it's no surprise that a comedian is behind it all.

See Also: Bar Owner Responds to Starbucks' Cease and Desist Letter Over Using "the F Word," and It's Totally Hilarious

That's right, Dumb Starbucks is all the work of Nathan for You's Nathan Fielder. The relatively new show on Comedy Central follows Fielder as he gives local businesses goofy marketing advice, which is usually detrimental to the business. However, if you're looking for tips on how to get hour-long lines outside your establishment, it might not be too bad an idea to go the Dumb Starbucks route -- take the name of a national chain ("Awful Red Lobster," anyone?), claim your business is a parody and an art gallery, your wares are art, and watch the ironic hipster folk come rolling in -- just make sure to get a legit health permit because the health department doesn't buy the art gallery claim.

We'll never know if Fielder's logic would have held up to copyright laws, but, according to USA Today, Starbucks wasn't buying it.

"We are evaluating next steps and while we appreciate the humor, they cannot use our name, which is a protected trademark," according to Starbucks' e-mail.

It's unknown yet what the company's reaction to it all being a stunt for Fielder's show is. However, we all might get the chance to see how it plays out in New York, as Fielder has commented that he has plans to reopen Dumb Starbuck in the budding hipster mecca of Brooklyn, according to the NY Daily News.

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Heather Hoch is a music, food, and arts writer based in Tucson. She enjoys soup, scotch, Electric Light Orchestra, and walking her dog, Frodo.
Contact: Heather Hoch